Andy Westlake tests a versatile, full-size tripod kit

Cullmann Mundo 525M tripodCullmann Mundo 525M tripod at a glance:

  • Max height: 159.5cm
  • Maximum load: 8kg
  • Weight: 1.65kg
  • Price: £179.99
  • Website: www.intro2020.co.uk

There was a time when every serious photographer had to use a tripod for shooting in low light. But with most cameras now having excellent high ISO capabilities and effective image stabilisation, they might seem less necessary. So to tempt buyers, manufacturers now produce fully featured kits, of which the Cullmann Mundo 525M is a prime example.

Indeed, this beautifully finished aluminium model ticks all the right boxes, with three angle, four-section legs that reverse-fold around the head for a shorter packed length. One leg can also be removed to form a monopod. The aluminium ball head has a separate lock for its panning base and uses an Arca-Swiss type quick-release clamp.

It’s really quick to set up, too, as all three twist locks on each leg can be undone together in a single motion. The pull-down leg-angle locks are easy to operate, as is the centre column  height adjustment. Meanwhile the ball head moves very smoothly and locks down with minimal drift. The only thing that’s a bit fiddly is packing the tripod up properly to fit into the supplied lightweight nylon carry bag.

Cullmann Mundo 525M in bag

The tripod folds down to 45.5cm and comes with a drawstring carry bag

Cullmann Mundo 525M tripod – key features

Short centre column

The included short column replaces the main column to allow ground-level shooting

Leg warmers

One fixed foam grip and one removable neoprene wrap make carrying the tripod more comfortable in cold weather

Spirit levels

Three bubble levels on the quick-release clamp aid with levelling your camera to avoid tilted horizons

Weight hook

You can hang your camera bag from the sprung, retractable hook for increased stability

Colour options

Cullmann Mundo 525M tripod colour options

Alongside the smart silver finish of our review unit, Cullmann also offers the Mundo 525M in blue and orange versions. Of course regulation all-black is also available for traditionalists.

Cullmann Mundo 525M tripod – our verdict

We see a lot of tripods come through the AP office, but the Cullmann Mundo 525M stands out for offering almost everything you might need in an easy-to-use package. It’s tall enough to hold a camera at eye level for a 6ft photographer, and should be strong enough to hold a mid-range DSLR or CSC with an f/2.8 telephoto zoom on board. It’s one of the best we’ve seen at this price point.

SCORE: 4.5 out of 5